Brazilian Natural Medicine

Bowen’s disease: what it is, symptoms and treatment

Bowen’s disease, also known as squamous cell carcinoma in situ, is a type of skin tumor characterized by the appearance of red or brown patches or patches on the skin, which usually present with crusts and a large amount of keratin, which may be not scaly. This disease is more common in women, although it can also happen in men, and is usually identified between 60 and 70 years of age, as it is related to prolonged exposure to the sun.

Bowen’s disease can be easily treated with photodynamic therapy, excision or cryotherapy, however if not treated correctly it can progress to more invasive carcinomas, which can have consequences for the person.

Symptoms of Bowen’s Disease

The spots indicative of Bowen’s disease can be single or multiple and can appear on any part of the body that is exposed to the sun, being more frequent on the leg, head and neck. However, they can also be identified in the palms of the hands, groin or genital region, especially in women who have the HPV virus and, in the case of men, in the penis.

The main signs and symptoms of Bowen’s disease are:

  • Appearance of red or brown spots on the skin that grow over time;
  • Itching at the wound site;
  • There may or may not be peeling;
  • The spots can be in high relief;
  • Lesions may be crusty or flat.

The diagnosis of Bowen’s disease is usually made by the dermatologist or the general practitioner from the observation of the spots through dermoscopy, which is a non-invasive diagnostic method in which the lesions present on the skin are evaluated. Based on dermoscopy, the doctor may indicate the need for a biopsy to verify whether the lesion cells have benign or malignant characteristics and, based on the result, the most appropriate treatment can be indicated.

Through dermoscopy and biopsy it is also possible to differentiate Bowen’s disease from other dermatological diseases such as psoriasis, eczema, basal cell carcinoma, actinic keratosis or fungal infection, which is known as dermatophytosis. Understand how dermoscopy is performed.

Main causes

The occurrence of Bowen’s disease is often associated with prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun, not necessarily because the person spends hours exposed to the sun, but rather with daily exposure voluntarily or involuntarily.

However, this disease can also be favored by exposure to carcinogenic substances, as a consequence of viral infections, mainly HIV, decrease in the activity of the immune system, due to chemotherapy or radiotherapy, transplantation, autoimmune or chronic diseases, for example. , or be the result of genetic factors.

How is the treatment done?

The treatment of Bowen’s disease is determined by the doctor according to the characteristics of the lesions, such as location, size and quantity. In addition, there is a risk of disease progression to more invasive carcinomas.

Thus, treatment can be done through cryotherapy, excision, radiotherapy, photodynamic therapy, laser therapy or curettage. Most of the time, phototherapy is used in the case of multiple and extensive lesions, while surgery may be recommended in the case of small and single lesions, where the entire lesion is removed.

In addition, in case Bowen’s disease occurs as a consequence of HPV infection, for example, the doctor must indicate treatment for the infection. It is also recommended to avoid prolonged exposure to the sun to prevent the progression of the disease and the emergence of complications.

See how skin cancer treatment is done.

Always consult a doctor.

Verified by RJ985 – Brazilian natural medicine

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